Remember when we heard that Warner Brothers and Peter Jackson were in talks for a third “Hobbit” film? Yeah, that’s happening. The new addition will hit screens in the summer of 2014.
Jackson put out an explanatory statement:
“Upon recently viewing a cut of the first film, and a chunk of the second, Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens and I were very pleased with the way the story was coming together,” Jackson said in a statement. “We recognized that the richness of the story of The Hobbit, as well as some of the related material in the appendices of The Lord of the Rings, gave rise to a simple question: Do we tell more of the tale? And the answer from our perspective as filmmakers and fans was an unreserved ‘yes.’
“We know the strength of our cast and of the characters they have brought to life,” the Oscar-winning director continued. “We know creatively how compelling and engaging the story can be, and — lastly, and most importantly — we know how much of the tale of Bilbo Baggins, the Dwarves of Erebor, the rise of the Necromancer, and the Battle of Dol Guldur would remain untold if we did not fully realize this complex and wonderful adventure. I’m delighted that New Line, MGM and Warner Bros. are equally enthusiastic about bringing fans this expansive tale across three films.”
Jackson had said they had shot extra footage that apparently they felt could be part of a new film. But I doubt he had enough material leftover for a full-length film, so I guess they needed to see if the actors were available for additional filming.
“The Hobbit” was already a rather slim book, but Jackson said he filled out the story with material from an appendix Tolkien attached to the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy. He and Walsh and Boyens will likely draw on that to put together a third film.
I’m still ambivalent about this. I feel pretty confident that the initial pair of films must be okay, otherwise no one would be jumping out to make a third. But is this going to be a real, full fledged film or will it be more like a cobbled together reel of outtakes and scenes that justifiably belong on the cutting room floor? I worry that it will be the latter.
“The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” will be released on Dec. 14, and”The Hobbit: There and Back Again,” will be out on Dec. 13, 2013